When we first saw the 2013 ES 350 here at Auto Trader, we were interested to see what improvements had been made on the popular 5th generation built for the last half a century on the Toyota Camry platform.
Initially revealed in 2012 at the New York International Auto Show, this 6th and latest generation has grown up, literally. Now built on the longer (by 2 inches) Toyota Avalon platform the ES 350 has still managed to improve on, as well as hold on to, the winning formula that has made the car so popular in the past.
So what has changed? Internally the back seat driver has gained the most with an extra 4.1 inches of legroom available – it seems that Lexus has taken its direction from cars such as the Centennial, where it has been assumed that more often than not the owner of the car will be driven rather than drive.
Externally the design changes are minimal but effective, with small touches such as ‘stabilising fins’ on the doors, tail lights and under- carriage, which have helped to reduce the co-efficient drag to 0.27, by pulling the airstream closer to the car and smoothing its passage.
Available in the UAE with either a 2.5 litre or the more powerful 3.5 litre V6, which we drove, the ES350 effortlessly cruises around town. Low friction materials contribute to its improved fuel efficiency and although the ES 350 may not have the show-boating, extrovert, pulse raising tendencies of the IS and LS series, it does however, maintain its reputation for progressive comfort, quality and style.
It is this winning formula that has helped to keep Lexus dominant with a 36% GCC Market share in the luxury vehicles groupings this year.
By Emily Paton